Daath 29/10/2010

DAATH, often typeset as DÅÅTH, is a metal band from Atlanta, Georgia. Their music incorporates styles such as thrash metal, death metal, industrial metal, and progressive metal. DÅÅTH was formed by Eyal Levi and Mike Kameron, who had been playing in bands since they were in middle school. DÅÅTH's first album ‘Futility’, was self-released in 2004. Their Roadrunner Records debut, ‘The Hinderers’, was released in 2007 followed by ‘The Consealers’ in 2009. The dueling guitar virtuosity of Emil Werstler and Eyal Levi harkens many comparisons to Mustaine and Friedman, all the while the acclaimed Kevin Talley (ex-Chimaira, ex-Dying Fetus, ex Misery Index) pounds away with fury and precision and bassist Jeremy Creamer provides a powerful groove. The band’s current line-up is completed by singer Sean Z who performs an extraordinary job on ‘The Concealers’  and leaves no doubt that he fits perfectly to the band’s uncompromising, dynamic sound.

 

 

The group’s highly anticipated third full-length album is self-titled and was released recently all across Europe. The new record is a face-melting masterpiece that was co-produced by the renowned Mark Lewis (Trivium, Devildriver) and Eyal Levi (guitars). So it seems there is much to talk about, Metal-Experience got the chance to talk to Sean Z. (Vocals) and Eyal Levi (Guitar). Here you can read what they had to say.

 

 

A couple of years ago we talked about your previous album ‘The Concealers’, can you give us a little update of what’s been happening since that release?

Eyal : We toured. Emil and I made ’Avalanche of worms’. DAATH made a new album. We’re about to tour again. We’ve been very very busy.

Sean: Touring and writing for sure

What was the songwriting process like for ‘Dååth’? Do people come in with just a riff, or complete songs? How much time did you spend on creating the songs?

Eyal : Songs get started either by jamming together, alone, or in groups. Demos are recorded at my studio and then it’s on. We go nuts on the songs and ourselves until we feel like they’re done. We can spend anywhere from a week to 6 months working on a song. It all just depends. I think that “Manufactured Insomnia” was written in 2 days while Arch Enemy Misanthrope took an entire 6 months. It just depends on what the song is asking for.

Which approach did you choose to create this album, did you go for a more raw exposition.. or something more reminiscent of your previous other works, or something all together different?

Eyal : Our focus on this record was capturing the most honest record possible in terms of sound and expression. We disregarded everything we’ve ever done as well as the outside world.

Sean : It Felt like we just went for it. Kill each other, pushed to the edge, knives at the throat, but somehow relaxed and yet confined. I guess that would be chaotic organization. Nothing previous I have done can compare. I spent a lot of time vocally on this album. Almost 2 full months.

How can we imagine you work on new songs, what's the typical writing process like for Dååth?

Eyal : Don’t try to imagine it. You won’t imagine it correctly. It’s one of those things that even if we described it in detail, nobody would understand because they didn’t go through it. We don’t have a typical writing process. We just have standards and goals.

Sean: Like next album new or this new album, there’s really no way to tell. Its just what experiences have brought us to this current time and place; and that’s what the songs sound like, now or then. Give it 2 years and ask us again. The answer will be different.

What were the goals you had in mind when you started to record ‘Dååth’, any elements you definitely wanted to include on the album?

Eyal : We wanted this record to sound like us. Unrestrained and as direct as possible. There’s so many elements that go into making a record. I’m not going to write a list. Just listen to the record! We accomplished our goals. It sounds like us. It sounds real. It’s intense as fuck. The playing is over the top. The vocals are brutally honest.

Sean : I personally was looking for a more complete vocal record. Something more than just go lay down two tracks and some doubles and we’re done. Thanks to Eyal we spent some grueling morning all nighters screaming, testing mics, trying new things, and just getting fucking crazy at 5am.

Could you describe the implications of the title ‘Dååth’, can we see this as a new beginning, or what?

Eyal : Every time you release a new album and start on a new promotional cycle for it, it is in effect, a new beginning. We self-titled this because it’s the first record where nobody outside the band got in our way. We totally destroyed every obstacle in our path and felt it only appropriate to self-title. But all in all this is not a new beginning. This is a continuation of a story that involves passion, sacrifice, and years of going to battle for our vision.

Where do you get your inspiration from? Can you tell me a little more about the lyrics?

Sean : The inspiration came from a life long of holding back all these lyrics for something worth a shit. I have had these ideas in my head for years. Some pertain to recent events, but they’re mostly a collection of shit I’ve experienced, in person or through someone else.

Did anything in particular inspire your lyrics?


Sean : Again, real life experiences, drug overdoses friends have died from, horrible disasters that affect the whole world, or things I have personally witnessed. They are my form of expressing all the random shit that goes on in my head.

How important is it to you that people pay attention to the lyrics apart from listening to the music?


Sean : The music on this record is complete as a whole, without lyrics i’ts just another song, and without music it’s just another vocalist. This record needs to be enjoyed as a complete package. Definitely pay attention to the lyrics. Learn them, understand them, but don’t let that take away from anything else.


Can you give us a little background information on the songs, is there a story behind them?

Sean : There’s a story behind them all, but to sit and analyze every one would take forever. I will say this: right before I started to record „Exit Plan“ my laptop dropped from 6 feet up onto the ground and since I was using my laptop as a notepad I was worried. Sure enough right before I opened my mouth to scream the laptop cracked on the ground and I lost everything. I was so fucking pissed! I lost all my lyrics most which weren’t backed up. So instead of just giving up I recorded the song from memory and if you notice, the screams are the most intense on that song out of any other track. Especially the chorus. I was just so pissed I lost all those lyrics.

How did the recording process proceed, did you work differently this time than you did with your previous works? How much time did you spend in the studio?

Eyal : Technically we spent 2 1/2 months in the studio but since we did all of our pre production in the same studio where we did the real production, I would just say the album took us six months to create from start to finish.
 


The album was co-produced by Mark Lewis and yourself. What are the main differences between producing an album by yourself co-producing?  

Eyal : Every time we make an album we get closer and closer to being able to do things 100 percent on our own. That’s our goal. Taking a more active role in the production means that our vision is that much less tampered with.

Can you tell us a little about working with producer Mark Lewis?

Eyal : Mark is a recording ninja and has a sense of humor that’s about as sick and offensive as ours. He’s an old friend of ours and we have a long working history. That’s why we hired him. We didn’t want a producer who would become another band member. We wanted someone who would be able to help translate our vision for the record to tape while surviving for a few months on our turf.

In which elements/songs on the new album can one clearly hear Mark Lewis’ vision and ideas?

Eyal : We hired Mark to fulfill our vision.

How hard was it to come up with a follow-up for ‘The Concealers’ and what do you think the are the main differences between that album and the new one?

Eyal : Nothing great comes easy. Every time you make a new record it’s hard, hard work. Coming up with a follow up to ‚The Concealers’ was easy because we didn’t even consider that record. Making the record itself was very difficult work. I’d say the main differences between the 2 records is in the overall approach. ‚Concealers’ was a very structured, very perfect kind of record where a methodical and almost cold approach was applied. Of course we were full of passion while making it but we were aiming for a very cold and calculated sound. On this one we focused more on capturing the intensity of the moment and really expressing some deep feelings and intense atmospheres.

With several albums under your belt, how far has Dååth surpassed your original dreams and what would you say is the most rewarding part of being in the band?

Eyal : There’s a few ways to look at it. Both these viewpoints inhabit my psyche at all times that I think about “where things are.” First, the fact that we’re still in the game, growing, and getting better is amazing to me. We’re seeing bands that were around when we first came on the scene just start falling apart. We’ve been through our ups and downs and powered through via sheer determination and we’re still standing. That makes me feel proud. Very proud. Have we surpassed the original dreams? No not yet and probably not ever.

Which song is your favorite one to play live? And which song do you find the most challenging one to play live?


Sean : Favorite is „Sharpen the Blades“, and the hardest song for me I’d say „From the Blind“.


What have been the highlights and low points throughout your career?

Eyal : There hasn’t been a single high that hasn’t led to a low or a low that’s not led to a high so all in all they’re all part of the same thing.

Sean - What he said

Could you respond to the following terms in just one word or sentence:
 

Eyal
Thrash                       : Old                          
Underground           : Unfortunately        

 Internet                     : Necesary                
Religion                    : Evil                          
Politics                      : Bullshit                   

The Netherlands     : Great               
United States           : Home                      

 

Sean

Thrash:                      : Metallica
Underground           : Apocalyptic Visions
Internet:                     : Amazing
Religion                    : Necessary
Politics                      : Boring
The Netherlands     : Fantastic
United States           : Home sweet home

What is your opinion on the metal scene these days? What do you think of the overload of bands at the moment and is there anything missing in the scene?

Eyal : I was talking about this the other day with a close friend of mine. We were talking about the Crotchduster record and how that wouldn’t be possible nowadays like it was when it came out. Reason being is that you can’t single out too many bands to make fun of anymore because so many sound identical. You try to copy a riff and it could be a riff that 38 bands used. Maybe the next step would be to make fun of the style though. Who knows. Either way, I feel like the metal scene is oversaturated with copy cat bands and producers who can barely play what they trick you into listening to. In a way it’s bad because it numbs people, but in another way it’s great because if you stand out you’ll stand out even more against the sea of unoriginal music.

What does the future hold for Dååth, any touring plans? Where do you see your musical direction going for the next album?

Eyal : Man if I could tell the future I’d be world famous for that by now. Who knows what the future holds? Or our next musical direction for that matter. We’ll know those things as they happen. Right now it’s planned that we will hit Europe with Fear Factory and High on Fire this December. That should be incredible!

I’d like to ask you a few questions about your instrumental project Levi/Werstler if that’s ok. Why did you and Emil decide to create this instrumental record?

Eyal : We were approached by Magna Carta Records to do the record. They told us to pick our lineup and gave us a realistic budget. Since a guitar album is something both of us wanted to do anyhow this seemed like the perfect opportunity.

Did you work and write differently for this album that you did for Dååth?

Eyal : Only in that the lineup was different and the situation was different. These aren’t songs, they’re instrumental pieces. Sean Reinert and Kevin Talley are two completely different beasts. Besides the fact that it’s Emil and myself, it’s completely different.

How do you think the overall experience of making this album inspired or influenced the new Dååth album?

Eyal : ’Avalanche Of Worms’ is the first time that Emil and I got to really go over the top artistically in the studio. There were no boundaries and no limits besides time. The attitude we adopted on this record we translated over to DAATH.

Thanks for your time,

Eugene

 

 

Current members :

Sean Z. - Vocals

Eyal Levi – Guitar

Jeremy Creamer – Bass Guitar

Emil Werstler – Guitar

Kevin Talley – Drums

 

Former members :

Sean Farber - vocals

Mike Kameron - keyboard, synth, additional vocals

Matthew Ellis - drums

 

Albums :

(2004) - Futility (Self-released)

(2007) - The Hinderers

(2007) - Dead on the Dancefloor (EP)

(2009) - The Concealers

(2010) - Daath